Why did EA Sports cancel FIFA Manager?
One game dominates the football management sim market. Sports Interactive’s Football Manager. However, there used to be a competitor. Until 2014 EA Sports produced a series called FIFA Manager.
The series started in 2001 under the name of Total Club Manager. Similar to FIFA, a new game was released annually. In 2006 the game was renamed to FIFA Manager.
FIFA Manager had many of the same features as Football Manager, and at the time some of their features were more advanced. Their player dynamics model was incorporated into Football Manager as late as 2019, six years after the last FIFA Manager game was released. The game lets you go even more in-depth with youth scouting and recruiting allowing you to set up youth camps in different countries and view youth teams as young as the under-9s.
However, EA Sports and its developer Bright Future struggled to combat the level of detail that Sports Interactive was able to put into their game. Football Manager is so accurate that real teams use it.
The lead creator and designer of the game, Gerald Kohler announced in an open letter that they simply couldn’t compete with the popularity of Football Manager.
“This is was a very tough decision, so I want to take the time to explain it.This probably comes as a big disappointment to many of you, and it is understandable that you would ask why. The football manager genre at this level of sophistication is highly specialised and primarily played in two countries (England and Germany), in which – on top of everything – one game has practically dominated the market in recent years.”
“The niche market and general trend toward online and mobile games were also contributing factors. Moreover, FM had reached a crossroads at which a new engine and/or corresponding online technology would be the only way to give the series a boost. When all these factors were evaluated, it led us to the decision to blow the final whistle.”via vg247.com
Football Manager was a more detailed game and had more resources going into it. EA Sports’ FIFA franchise was more valuable and EA Sports didn’t want to invest serious money into a losing battle. FIFA is not perfect but it trounces PES for a reason. EA Sports are good at making football simulation games, but can’t compete on the management level.
Football Manager was more detailed, had a better engine, and ultimately went deeper into the experience of managing a team. FIFA Manager had some good features but there just wasn’t enough money invested in it to compete.